OMS measures 19,000 pipe ends for Congo River Pipeline

  • January 15, 2013
  • Case Study

January 15, 2013 - Optical Metrology Services (OMS) completed the measurement of more than 19,000 pipe ends for Bredero Shaw at its pipe coating facility in Leith, Scotland. The pipes are destined for use on Chevron’s technically challenging Congo River Crossing (CRX) Pipeline project. In two separate mobilisations in August 2012, OMS staff measured a total of 19,402 pipe ends (20” and 22” OD) using its automatic Pipe Checker laser-based measurement tool. OMS measured the internal and outside diameter profile (i.e. thickness) of the pipe ends immediately after the pipe preservation coating removal process, therefore avoiding any delays to Bredero Shaw’s overall production process. OMS staff carried out these measurements in a limited, two-minute timeframe. As Jim Buston, Senior Business Executive at OMS commented: “This was an unusual, challenging pipe measurement survey in the sense that our staff had to take measurements inline with the plant’s production process, within such a limited time window. We therefore deployed six OMS staff in total, three per shift working across two shifts. During storage, the pipes had been lined with a special preservation coating, which had to be removed first by Bredero Shaw. Our crew then measured the pipe ends within the two-minute window: one person was deployed at each end of the pipe, with two Pipe Checker Tools working simultaneously, with another engineer floating between the two ends. There were no delays to Bredero Shaw’s production process throughout the entire pipe end measurement process. Our work simply slotted into the customer’s process without causing any disruptions at all.” The pipes were measured at a distance of 12mm from the pipe end. As well as providing Bredero Shaw with general dimensional inspection of pipe ends during the preservation coating removal process, the measuring process also allowed OMS to provide analysis of the pipe ends compared to dimensional specification criteria, including likely fit-up parameters.  The CRX Pipeline project is a very challenging one. The pipes will be installed in extremely fast-flowing currents at depths of up to 117 metres. The pipes are designed to transport 250 million cubic feet per day of gas, fed from Chevron’s two blocks off Cabinda. From two platforms installed either side of the Congo River canyon, Chevron has drilled a ‘well intersection conduit’ – a tunnel created by two wells drilled from either side of the canyon, and intersecting at a point below the canyon riverbed. This conduit will hold the subsea pipelines, preventing them being exposed to the fast-flowing currents of the Congo River, as it enters the Atlantic Ocean. About Optical Metrology Services Optical Metrology Services Limited (OMS) is a market leader in the provision of pipe measuring products and services. The company specialises in measuring equipment and consulting services for use within the pipe manufacturing and pipeline construction sectors, both onshore and offshore. A key focus for OMS is in the dimensional measurement of oil and gas pipes or other structures such as military gun barrels, processing industry tubes or manufactured cylindrical objects, where dimensions are critical.   

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